Supporting Mom-and-Pop Stores in Food Deserts
Recently, some important questions have been raised around the national Healthy Food Financing Initiative (HFFI), and particularly how it will support local fresh food retailers in expanding healthy food access in their communities.
In response, PolicyLink, The Reinvestment Fund, and The Food Trust have penned a joint op-ed in Grist Magazine highlighting exactly how HFFI will help small grocers, farmer’s markets, and other independently-owned stores across the country. Here’s a quick peek:
Leaders in the administration and Congress (in partnership with outside advocacy and community groups) have been diligent in figuring out what has worked — and bringing those proven policies to a national scale. The Pennsylvania Fresh Food Financing Initiative (FFFI) has served as the model for the Obama administration’s efforts. The Pennsylvania program began in 2004, taking a $30 million state investment that has now helped develop 88 new or expanded fresh food outlets, leveraged a total of $190 million in total project costs, and created or saved more than 5,000 jobs.
Every project backed by the FFFI was an independent grocer, a farmers market, a co-operative, a public market with many farmers represented, or a small corner store. And, perhaps most importantly, more than 400,000 people now have access to healthy food who didn’t before.
Visit here to read the full piece – and don’t forget to head over to the comments section and let us know your thoughts on how HFFI will help build stronger, healthier communities.